Stittsville author wins a Silver Royal Palm Literary Award

Barbara Bond (aka Barbara Robson) is a Stittsville resident, living in Amberwood. She is an award winning journalist and was a snowbird who wintered for 15 years on Amelia Island off the coast of Florida. Barbara has written a series of novels that leave you craving more: The Beachwalkers, The Healing Island and her latest novel published in 2020, The Last Chapter. Everyday Enemies is also a fictional novel written by Barbara on a young woman, Cassandra Duncan, who discovers her tap water is laced with asbestos and she will do everything possible to protect her young family.

(The fictional novel written under the pen name Barbara Bond tells the story of one family’s discovery of asbestos in their tap water.)

It is Barbara’s latest novel in the series, The Last Chapter, that garnered attention from the Florida Writers’ Association. For ten years, Barbara was changing her writing style to capture the fiction audience. She has been writing on environmental issues since the 1980s and has received awards from the former Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society for pieces on ozone depletion. Barbara says of this award, “I was really pleased with that because the only other journalist they had ever acknowledged was my hero, Lydia Dotto, science writer at  the Globe”.

On July 23, 2001, Barbara wrote an article in the Ottawa Citizen on Archimedes Palimpsest for which she received a Second Place mention from the Rome based Media Save Art Association. In 2017, when Governor General David Johnston was celebrating 150 years of Rideau Hall, Barbara was one of 150 Canadians chosen to attend an honourary dinner for her environmental journalism in the 1980s.

(The Ottawa Citizen article from July 23, 2001 – Archimedes Palimpsest written by Barbara Robson. Newspapers.com)

Barbara has learned and it is an extremely proud moment for her that her novel, The Last Chapter, has just won a Silver award in the Royal Palm Literary Awards of the Florida Writers’ Association. Barbara tells Stittsville Central, “It’s my first fiction award after ten years of trying to make the change from non-fiction to fiction”.

Barbara shares with us, “The novella, The Last Chapter, received the Silver Award from the Florida Writers’ Association for the third in a series of three novels set on Amelia Island, Florida, where we spent some 15 lovely winters. We sold our condo when Donald Trump was elected”.

The series of novels, follow two women of a certain age (Frannie and Elspeth), experiencing opposite economic circumstances, who become friends while walking the stunning beaches of Amelia. There’s the odd biographical bit in the last one, including the incident of the tire slashing.

The tire slashing incident actually took place while Barbara and her husband were at their condo on Amelia Island. This is what she shared, “ours were slashed by an unhinged neighbor, a PTSD sufferer of too many tours of duty in Afghanistan. Prior to Trump’s election, he mostly kept himself in check, but the Donald’s victory seemed to give him permission to act out his crazies, including threatening to shoot people at the pool and displaying his rifles in the parking lot to intimidate the handyman. He had us in his sight because my husband, a condo director, had tried to persuade the owner of the unit that his tenant wasn’t a good fit for the place. The owner in Texas only cared that the rent was paid. He told the neighbor and the neighbor took it out on us. The police were no help at all. At the time, before Florida’s laws changed, they couldn’t even remove his guns. We thought it best that we get our of Dodge!

Barbara recently published Amberwood Village: An Illustrated History and the amusing children’s book, Alex in Amberwood that is now in its second printing. Barbara is quite happy with the success of her books and tells us of the Alex in Amberwood book, “Your piece has prompted orders for 15 copies of “Alex”. Thanks so much. The club thanks you”.

The novella, The Last Chapter, is available on Amazon in print and Kindle format under the pen name of Barbara Bond. We highly recommend that the four books in the series be read and enjoyed by this local author.


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